Brew a Better Cup at Home

by | Mar 19, 2012 | Shopping

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If you’re an office worker, or if you’ve ever stayed in a hotel, then you know what drip coffee tastes like. You’ve finally decided to skip the morning cup of swill that passes for coffee in the office break room and stop paying for overpriced fancy lattes by brewing your own. Now you have a choice to make – drip coffee maker or espresso machine? Let’s look at the some of the advantages and disadvantages of each.

Drip coffee makers have been around for a long, long time. Now a standard piece of office equipment, the 12-cup machine is a model of efficiency and ease of use. Simple, practical, and economical, the drip coffee maker is a useful thing to have if you have a lot of coffee drinkers at home or if you’re accustomed to having people over who expect to be offered a cup of java. This type of machine is also easy to clean and is one of most durable appliances out there. On the downside, drip coffee makers tend to take up a lot of space. Some newer kitchens feature built-in or under-counter models to save space, but if space in your kitchen is at a premium, you may want to consider a smaller model. Finally, the drip coffee maker is good for your basic “cuppa joe,” but if your preference runs to fancy beverages with steamed milk and flavorings, you probably want to look elsewhere.

For the European-style java aficionado, there’s really only one option for coffee makers: the espresso machine. As espresso continues its rise in popularity and more and more people take their coffee with a variety of add-ins like steamed milk and shots of syrup, the espresso machine has enabled the masses to turn their kitchen into their own personal coffeehouse. Espresso machines are good for people who want to brew one or two cups at a time, not so useful when it comes to making coffee in large batches. They’re also a bit more difficult to operate, although practice makes perfect. For most people, the biggest turnoff of these machines is their price, although it probably ends up costing far less in the long run than a weekly trip to Starbucks.

Of course, if you’re in the market for a coffee machine, your options aren’t limited to drip coffee makers and $300 espresso machines; there are percolators and French presses to consider, as well. In any event, you’ll save yourself money – and perhaps the misery of a lousy brew– by taking the time to invest in a machine that lets you be your very own barista.

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